What do you think of when you think about a Boy Scout? Many will think of camping, patches, Being Prepared, and so on. One thing that always came to my mind was helping and serving others. I will never forget a particular episode of the old Batman sitcom with Adam West and Burt Ward that taught me about being a Boy Scout. No, it didn’t involve a POW! or BAM! as a villain fell to the floor. It was of a young man in a Scout uniform helping an old lady across the street. I can’t tell you which episode or what cliche Batman used to teach Robin a lesson on patience that day, but I’ll never forget that image of a Boy Scout. That’s what Scouts did. It was recognizable in America. Is it still?
What happened to those boys? Are they still out there? When was the last time you saw Scouts out in the community giving service, helping others, and doing a good turn? If you can’t remember, it’s time we change that…
The next time your Scout Pack, Troop, Team, or Crew is planning a service project, do something VISIBLE! Find something to do where people will see you. Do it on a Saturday when the community is out and about. And perhaps most importantly, wear your uniforms! It’s recognizable and it shows what we stand for. One of the greatest things about a Boy Scout uniform is that it’s okay to get them dirty. It’s time that we remind the community what we are here for and that we are proud to do it as Scouts.
Another great idea is to take part in community events and holiday parades. Carry the flag at public meetings, give the prayers at a town meeting, show the world why Scouts take seriously their Oath to do their Duty to God and Country. When done properly, these visuals will stir feelings of reverence and patriotism, citizenship and service.
Let’s go out and remind people what Scouts do. I refuse to believe that it isn’t as recognizable and synonymous with Scouts today as it was years ago. The next time you see a lost traveler trying to find their way through the fog, help them and do your good turn. After all, isn’t that what the Boy Scouts of America was founded upon?